Canada Health Insurance

Joined
Nov 12, 2005
Messages
147
Location
New York
I get my health insurance thru my employer. I pay $350/month for me and my wife. I can pick my doctor and most are in the network. It costs me $18 co-pay per visit. Medicine also costs me $18. I'm healthy so it works for me. How do you Canadians like your national health insurance? Do we Americans have anything to fear if the government takes over? Talk about your experience, not from rumor or speculation. Thanks,
 
Joined
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Waterloo, ON
First of all its a bit different in each Province. The Federal government gives funding to the Provinces and spent it on healthcare as they need. We pay nothing except for parking at the hospital, or Doctors office. It's a private system and we pick our own Doctor in Ontario. Funding for this all comes from tobacco and alcohol taxes ect. (these items are expensive in Canada) Things have improved as far as wait time for operations that are not essential. In the past the government was under funding the system (in my opioion) to make it more efficient. I would now rate it 90% if asked. You have nothing to fear in my opinion. The US is a country that can afford a single payer system and you will not notice much differene except no more premiums to pay...
 
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Joined
Aug 30, 2007
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Bonnyville, AB
In Alberta, up until recently there was an #88 per month premium per family to help fund the medicare system. For dental, prescriptions, optical, etc. additional coverage must be purchased, or is provided by employers. If it's urgent, it gets done, if it's not so urgent it waits. A co-worker's son had a broken orbit due to a sports injury. Diagnosed on Friday, referred on Monday, seen by a plastic surgeon on Tuesday after the swelling went down, surgery on Thursday. If I was in a severe car accident, I would be stabilized here, helicoptered to Edmonton and brought to the best doctors available. I would get everything I need, including being sent to a rehabilitation hospital and outpatient physio after. I don't worry about my health care too much.
 
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Let me clarify my first post. Prescriptions are only fully paid for seniors, or if you are in a hospital. Most people have some form of private employer group coverage for prescriptions and dental. If you want Breast Implants, you will have to pay for that yourself. It’s pretty much like MGregoir said as far as urgent needs get looked at right away, and non-urgent get to wait. Non essential wait times are way down in the last 5-10 years as our Federal Government has been running budget surplus each year and has had more money to put into health care. Doctors bill the Ontario Government and are paid on a fee schedule. One thing, they don’t have to worry about getting paid. Example: my daughter broke her leg skiing a few years ago. Ambulance picked her up at the ski hill and took her to the local hospital. We waited a few hours in emerg, then had x-ray and saw a doctor. The emerg Doctor put on a cast and sent us home. We may have been there 5 hours max. Two days later we saw a specialist. He did not like the cast they put on so took it off and put on his own cast. A few visits to him over the next few months and the cast come off. We paid nothing but for parking. Biggest threat in my opinion has been that we have lost Doctors and Nurses to the US as they can make more money down there. The US states used to come up recruiting Nurses all the time. (They may still do this for all I know) Border cities like Port Huron MI have about 1/3 of the hospital staff Canadians.
 
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Joined
May 29, 2009
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Afghanistan
We pay a health tax, depending on income, you pay more or less. Besides that everything is covered, any cancer, surgery, ICU, whatever. It's great because when you retire, you don't have to worry about going broke going to the doctor, and draining your spouses funds just before you die. Most medical costs occur in your past year of life. Also, our drugs are covered after the age of 65. You guys in the States are being HOSED big time, by ?I don't know who, but I know you pay way more, get way less, and they can cut you off at any time. No one here ever gets cut off, and no one every has to take out a loan, or lose their house because they got sick. Just to repeat: You guys in the States are getting HOSED.
 
Joined
Sep 23, 2008
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Ontario, Canada
My experiences have all been pretty good so far, the only user pay part is for most drugs which come out of pocket but most employers provide some sort of drug plan, which costs them 10's of dollars a month. Dental maintenance is not covered either although there some talk of covering it for kids under 18. If you have bad enough dental problems that its affecting your health then thats covered... There has been some problems in the past with shortages in expensive diagnostic equipment with people waiting for MRI's for weeks but that seems to have been sorted out. I'd agree with MGregoir that serious stuff gets taken care of quickly. To give it a grade I'd say B, there are still alot of things that could be done better, some parts of the system are laughable in Ontario, for some reason going to electronic health records is costing 100's of millions of dollars? Seems to me designing the database and the web access would be a good co-op project for a couple of computer science majors, but I guess the security needed these days is complex... I'd still say its a 10's of millions project...
 

Bill in Utah

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I just got done having my best friend's Dad spend a few weeks with us getting Cataract surgery done here in Salt Lake City. He lives in Toronto where he had been diagnosed for years with them and over a year ago with needing surgery. He was put on a "list" and to check back in 9 months for a date. Waited 9 months and was then told to wait another 9 months because of his "need" and "age" (he is in his mid 70's). After going through the proper channels to find out when he could get a firm date (which he NEVER did get ANYONE to commit to) he went ahead and made an appt to come down here, see an Eye Doctor who got him into surgery the very next week. After a few follow up visits he is now back home being able to see clearly for the first time in YEARS. Ask him how much his "free" health care cost him for this operation... My wife is in the health care industry. She knows of a LOT of snowbirds who come down to the southwest USA to get their health care done while they are staying away from the cold. If we TRULY wanted to help out our health care system, get rid of all the scummy lawyers. They are screwing up this world more than anyone else.. (ok, as much as the idiots in Wash DC) Bill
 
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The spent 2 billion setting up and taking down the gun registry. They will spend ten billion making a national health registry. GPs business here are not allowed to bill even as much as an automotive garage that fixes your car.
 
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Apr 12, 2008
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FL
I've said it in this forum before. It should be obvious honestly as it's been shown here and elsewhere. A US govt run healthcare system will be in the business of rationing money spent on it and wasting taxpayer money supporting a bloated, uncaring, macro oriented bureaucracy. If you're younger, you'll think it's fine. Your kids will get their shots and bandages. If you're older, well, not so good.
 
Joined
Jul 24, 2002
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The Sandhills of NewYorkistan
 Originally Posted By: Captain_Klink
We pay a health tax, depending on income, you pay more or less. Besides that everything is covered, any cancer, surgery, ICU, whatever. It's great because when you retire, you don't have to worry about going broke going to the doctor, and draining your spouses funds just before you die. Most medical costs occur in your past year of life. Also, our drugs are covered after the age of 65. You guys in the States are being HOSED big time, by ?I don't know who, but I know you pay way more, get way less, and they can cut you off at any time. No one here ever gets cut off, and no one every has to take out a loan, or lose their house because they got sick. Just to repeat: You guys in the States are getting HOSED.
Boy, I though things were bad in Middle East!
 
Joined
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Waterloo, ON
Watched CNN the other day, it seems a lot of Americans are going to India for Health Care (operations) costs 10% of what it does in the US
 
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Bill in Utah

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 Originally Posted By: sprintman
I watched Sicko yesterday. OP I suggest you watch that thenj post questions.
Michael Moore = What a hypocrite!
 
Joined
Aug 21, 2008
Messages
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ON, Canada eh?
 Originally Posted By: Bluestream
First of all its a bit different in each Province. The Federal government gives funding to the Provinces and spent it on healthcare as they need. We pay nothing except for parking at the hospital, or Doctors office. It's a private system and we pick our own Doctor in Ontario. Funding for this all comes from tobacco and alcohol taxes ect. (these items are expensive in Canada) Things have improved as far as wait time for operations that are not essential. In the past the government was under funding the system (in my opioion) to make it more efficient. I would now rate it 90% if asked. You have nothing to fear in my opinion. The US is a country that can afford a single payer system and you will not notice much differene except no more premiums to pay...
+1 \:\! I wait at most 20 minutes when I go to see my doctor and I can usually get an appointment in the same week if I need to see him. Also I have been rushed to the hospital a couple of times from work due to injury (stitches etc...) and it was in/out within an hour. I wouldn't have it any other way... IMO, from what I have seen in American media, the Private medical industry is trying to paint a picture that "our" style of system doesn't work because they would loose their highly profitable highly discriminatory industry. ;\) I have had educated discussions/arguments with Amercian members of this board who claim that we wait hours for treatment, can't find a doctor, and pay through the nose in taxes. While our taxes are higher, I never pay more than 37% per year (I make a reasonably high salary) and I have my health care provided and it can never be taken away from me like private insurance can. Don't know about you but I sleep a lot easier at night...
 
Joined
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Messages
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Waterloo, ON
 Originally Posted By: Bill in Utah
I just got done having my best friend's Dad spend a few weeks with us getting Cataract surgery done here in Salt Lake City. He lives in Toronto where he had been diagnosed for years with them and over a year ago with needing surgery. He was put on a "list" and to check back in 9 months for a date. Waited 9 months and was then told to wait another 9 months because of his "need" and "age" (he is in his mid 70's). After going through the proper channels to find out when he could get a firm date (which he NEVER did get ANYONE to commit to) he went ahead and made an appt to come down here, see an Eye Doctor who got him into surgery the very next week. After a few follow up visits he is now back home being able to see clearly for the first time in YEARS. Ask him how much his "free" health care cost him for this operation... Bill
Bill, I live hear and have never heard of anyone having to wait that long for anything healthcare related. If this was a common thing, believe me we would be know about it...
 
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Joined
Sep 28, 2002
Messages
39,802
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Pottstown, PA
 Originally Posted By: Bill in Utah
I just got done having my best friend's Dad spend a few weeks with us getting Cataract surgery done here in Salt Lake City. He lives in Toronto where he had been diagnosed for years with them and over a year ago with needing surgery. He was put on a "list" and to check back in 9 months for a date. Waited 9 months and was then told to wait another 9 months because of his "need" and "age" (he is in his mid 70's). After going through the proper channels to find out when he could get a firm date (which he NEVER did get ANYONE to commit to) he went ahead and made an appt to come down here, see an Eye Doctor who got him into surgery the very next week. After a few follow up visits he is now back home being able to see clearly for the first time in YEARS. Ask him how much his "free" health care cost him for this operation... My wife is in the health care industry. She knows of a LOT of snowbirds who come down to the southwest USA to get their health care done while they are staying away from the cold. If we TRULY wanted to help out our health care system, get rid of all the scummy lawyers. They are screwing up this world more than anyone else.. (ok, as much as the idiots in Wash DC) Bill
Great service here ...but you failed to mention the tab for the procedure. Now under the Canadian system, he's waiting, under the Medicare system ..he'd be providing a Pb parachute that's killing the rest of us ..according to some economic theories. Again..eliminate all insurance ..and see where "the market" takes itself.
 

OVERKILL

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 Originally Posted By: Bill in Utah
I just got done having my best friend's Dad spend a few weeks with us getting Cataract surgery done here in Salt Lake City. He lives in Toronto where he had been diagnosed for years with them and over a year ago with needing surgery. He was put on a "list" and to check back in 9 months for a date. Waited 9 months and was then told to wait another 9 months because of his "need" and "age" (he is in his mid 70's). After going through the proper channels to find out when he could get a firm date (which he NEVER did get ANYONE to commit to) he went ahead and made an appt to come down here, see an Eye Doctor who got him into surgery the very next week. After a few follow up visits he is now back home being able to see clearly for the first time in YEARS. Ask him how much his "free" health care cost him for this operation... My wife is in the health care industry. She knows of a LOT of snowbirds who come down to the southwest USA to get their health care done while they are staying away from the cold. If we TRULY wanted to help out our health care system, get rid of all the scummy lawyers. They are screwing up this world more than anyone else.. (ok, as much as the idiots in Wash DC) Bill
Interesting. My mom was diagnosed with cataracts a month or so ago. She gets the surgery on Monday.......... She's 57.
 
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Well, beyond the potential for propaganda (not you) .. ..I'd probably retort (if I were to want to): Sure!! She's still got mileage in her to earn and pay taxes!!! Wait until she's retired!!!
 

Bill in Utah

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UT
 Originally Posted By: Bluestream
Bill, I live hear and have never heard of anyone having to wait that long for anything healthcare related. If this was a common thing, believe me we would be know about it...
Scroll down to wait times Seems other people are having issues. And TV stations doing stories on wait times. Let me quote something here (and I just googled wait times right now) "Since 2002, the Canadian government has invested $5.5 billion to address the wait times problem. In April 2007, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that all ten provinces and three territories would establish patient wait times guarantees by 2010. Canadians will be guaranteed timely access to health care in at least one of the following priority areas, prioritized by each province: cancer care, hip and knee replacement, cardiac care, diagnostic imaging, cataract surgeries or primary care." Guess your Prime Minister is trying to take care of something that does not exist? And your government put in 5.5 BILLION to TRY to ADDRESS wait times? (and it worked so well) Proves my point... If you want to SCREW something up, let a government "fix" it... (or RUN it) Bill
 
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